It’s March 21st, the day of Apple’s March 2016 media event. As we’ve been reporting over the past several months, Apple is set to debut a new 4-inch smartphone called the iPhone SE, a 9.7-inch version of the iPad Pro, and new Apple Watch bands. You can read our extensive roundup to see all of our expectations. It is still to be seen if Apple CEO Tim Cook takes the stage to discuss the Apple/FBI case, which goes to court tomorrow morning. In this News Hub, we will be live blogging all of the major announcements and highlighting all of our site-wide coverage of the event. The event begins at 10 AM Pacific Time/1 PM Eastern Time, but we’ll be updating this post with the latest details before the event as well.
iPad Air 2
– That’s a wrap.
– $599 for the 32GB iPad Pro, $749 for 128GB, $899 for 256 GB.
– Phil Schiller announces 9.7-inch iPad Pro: weighs less than 1 pound, better and brighter display than the iPad Air 2, 25% better color gamut. New iPad has a True Tone Display. New quad-speakers. A9X chip. New Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil support. 12 Megapixel rear camera, 5 megapixel FaceTime camera, Retina Flash, Live Photos, Panoramas, 4K video recording. iPad Pro comes in Rose Gold, new cases and colors.
– Cook back to discuss the iPad.
– Apple announces iOS 9.3 available today.
– iPhone SE sales begin on Thursday, shipping next week, 100 countries by May.
– iPhone SE: $399 for 16GB. $499 for 64GB.
– iPhone SE has Apple Pay, faster WiFi, faster LTE.
– iPhone SE cameras: 12 megapixel rear camera, True Tone flash, Time Lapse, 4K video recording
– iPhone SE looks like a 5s with matte edges, A9 chip, M9 chip with “Hey Siri” support.
– Greg Joswiak on stage to announce the new 4-inch iPhone: the iPhone SE.
– Cook announces tvOS 9.2 update, says more Siri Universal Search apps coming. tvOS 9.2 adds folders for organizing apps on the Home screen, Dictation, Live Photos support, iCloud Photo Library, Siri for App Store search.
– Cook now discussing the Apple TV, March Madness app, says 5000 tvOS apps now on the App Store.
– Cook announces the Apple Watch now starts at $299.
– Cook back on stage to discuss the Apple Watch (here come the new bands): Cook announces new Woven Nylon bands, new Sport Band, Leather band colors, and Space Black Milanese Loop.
– Williams announces CareKit: first app is for Parkinson’s. 6 major university hospitals will be using CareKit. An app from from Texas Medical Center will be used for people to manage their progress post-surgery. For example, using the motion sensors in the iPhone to manage range of motion. Williams emphasizes privacy in ResearchKit and CareKit. New framework will be available in April.
– Jeff Williams discussing how ResearchKit can go beyond studies to help manage care.
– Video now playing about ResearchKit, narrated by Divya Nag.
– Jeff Williams discussing ResearchKit and its successes: “researchers are gaining insight” into new health matters. Williams says ResearchKit is helping to indicate that Diabetes Type II has subtypes.
– Apple COO Jeff Williams now up to discuss Apple’s health initiatives.
– Apple relaunching its trade-in efforts under the Renew brand.
– Lisa Jackson announces an Apple robot used by Apple called Liam to tear-down iPhones for recycling. Pretty cool. Video narrated by hardware chief Dan Riccio. Liam was designed in California by Apple engineers, and Jackson says it will improve Apple’s recycling efforts. Apple says that this saves resources as Apple can reuse the materials for other objects like solar panels and future products.
– Jackson discussing the Apple Store Reuse and Recycle program: iPhone upgrade and trade-up programs.
– Lisa Jackson: 99% of the paper we use in packaging is recycled or comes from sustainably managed forests. Apple partnering with new funds to protect forests, including 1 million acres of forest in China.
– Lisa Jackson: Every time you send an iMessage, ask Siri a question, or make a FaceTime call, you can feel good about your impact on the environment.
– Lisa Jackson discussing the building of solar farms in China in yak farms, announcing solar panels on roofs in buildings in Singapore.
– Lisa Jackson: Apple is now 93% run on renewable energy in its facilities worldwide. 100% renewable power is used in the United States as well as offices and stores in China. Apple is 100% renewable in 23 countries around the world.
– Apple VP Lisa Jackson talking about Apple’s environmental efforts: “two initiatives to leave the world better than we found it.”
– Cook discussing FBI case.
– Cook: More than 1 billion Apple devices in use around the world (mentioned on previous earnings call). Cook calls it an “incredible milestone” and an “indicator” of Apple’s “impact.”
– Tim Cook now on stage.
– Keynote has begun, Apple playing a video about 40 years of Apple in 40 seconds.
-Event guests have begun arriving at Apple’s Town Hall in Cupertino ahead of the event:
– We’re hearing there will be some extensive camera upgrades in the 9.7-inch iPad Pro: